I am now 26!

Birthday breakfast!
If you've been following my blog for a while, you know I've had some pretty special birthdays in the past. For my 25th birthday last year, I felt blessed to have the means to treat myself to a life-changing trip to Tokyo

This year is a complete change of pace! I didn't travel or eat out. Aside from speaking to close friends who called with warm well-wishes, and family, I took this year to reflect and pamper myself. Along with my birthday comes a new year after all; like it often does, my birthday falls at the peak of the Lunar New Year. Therefore, this year I decided to actually reflect and enjoy my own company, especially because I'm not sure when I will have the time to do this in the future.

I took a relaxing morning walk in the cold, cooked myself wonderful meals with many of my favorite dishes, had a long, warm bath, and watched some interesting documentaries. And I did a great deal of thinking. 

Not in a melancholic way, but in an excited way! Because let me tell you, I have so much to be grateful for, and several cool opportunities coming up this year. I can't wait to share them, but now is not the time. Instead, I've been meditating in excitement.

Many people think spending time by yourself (particularly on your birthday, or a holiday) is something to be ashamed of or avoided. But actually — especially as an introvert — alone time helps me recharge and thrive. Whether with others or alone, I don't think anyone wants to feel emotionally drained on their birthday. Honestly, the older I get, the less patience I have for lies, scheming, and all-round negativity. When I am around negativity, I simply take note, smile, and adjust my behavior accordingly. Just because you weren't actually out of earshot doesn't mean you have to carry on like you were.

I honestly now feel more energetic and as if my confidence regarding the future has been recharged. For me, the year has just begun. I've been doing lots of soul searching and general hard work in regards to how I view the world, other people, and more importantly, myself. I will always be a kid at heart, but I earnestly accept the challenge of leaving the first half of my 20s behind in preparation for the greatness coming this year and in the future!

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